Sixteen and Dealing with those…Summertime Blues

It felt much more like summer this week as we finally dried out a little and temperatures soared into the 90s. Couple those temps with the Indiana humidity and it was roasty-toasty outdoors. For fat, hairy guys like me; it meant extreme perspiration just breathing in the shade! Matt had a quiet week. He’s still working on getting his job transferred up to Greenwood. He spent most of his week with Ms. Taylor and studied for his teacher’s license exams. Abby split her week between working fulltime and spending time out of town with friends and her boyfriend. Luke wrapped-up his basketball workouts this week, finished the regular season of his baseball league and enters moratorium after a long, hard week of football practices. Ann wrapped up her physical therapy sessions this week and is optimistic that the doctor will order another round for her. She continues to make slow progress, getting around without the cane more often but still struggling to get up and down. Icing and elevating her knees when she can and wrapping her legs at night seems to still help but it’s still slow going for now. I lost another few pounds this week, thanks in part to meeting not only my walking goal of fifteen miles but also canoeing another seven on top of it. But the big news of the week was Luke celebrating his sixteenth birthday. It was a big milestone for him (and his parents!). It will now only be three short months until he gets his driver’s license. He’s growing up so fast… Hello again and welcome back to the Scheu Family Blog.

Monday was Luke’s sixteenth birthday. It was a sunny start to the day but it rained in the afternoon. We had threats of severe weather that night but thankfully it missed us. Abby worked at Wings & Rings while Luke spent his birthday at basketball workouts in the morning, fishing with Blane in the afternoon and then attending football practice that evening. Ann & I drive into work in Black Betty for the first time in a couple weeks – I love air conditioning! We both had fast days at work then left early so she could go to physical therapy. While she went in to do her thing, I walked three miles around the area. I tried to walk in the cemetery, but found the east entrance blocked with a new fence…so I headed back towards the shopping center and walked around out there. That night, Ann made a special dinner for Luke, since it was his big day. I cooked NY strip steaks on the grill while Ann made French fries, parmesan encrusted green beans and salad with her homemade Shallo’s dip. We ate when Luke finally got home from practice. After dinner, he opened presents and Ann & I turned in early while the kids made plans to go out and do something on the town. Here are pictures of Luke’s school baseball team from the Abrell’s Photo Works website. Mr. Abrell did a nice job of photographing the varsity & JV teams this year and his website has a ton of them available. Luke’s summer league pictures are included here as well.

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Ann & I were up early for her to facilitate a meeting between the two OB practices at the hospital on Tuesday morning. I had a long day, performing my semi-annual Hazard Surveillance Rounds at work and on top of that, the State walked-in to inspect us as well. Justin & I walked three miles around the airport property on a hot, sunny day in the 80s. It had just stopped raining and was extremely humid, making it difficult to breathe. Abby took Luke to his dentist appointment where he got two teeth filled then they went to Columbus to go shopping and eat lunch (once the feeling returned to his mouth!). Abby worked second shift at BWR. Luke missed his football practice that evening in lieu of attending his baseball game, out at the complex where the Cubs faced the Franklin Co. Dairy Cottage team. Luke started at first base and played there in 3 of the 4 innings of the game. He also pitched an inning. He came on in relief in the second inning with the bases loaded. He gave up one run but got the final two outs to get out of the inning. He faced three batters that inning: he walked the first one, struck out the second batter and got the third to ground out. In the third inning, he quickly got one out then walked the next six batters, including four that got plunked – before being pulled-out. He gave up six runs, combined – all unearned. So, his season ERA is still zero. He also recorded two assisted putouts at first base. Offensively, he was 1-2 with a base on balls. He walked on four pitches during his first at-bat then scored from first base on a single to right. That boy can fly when he tries hard! Then, in the next inning, he hit a towering shot down the leftfield line with the bases loaded. It cleared the fence by 40 feet, easily going about 425 feet!! Although there are differing opinions about whether or not it went over the foul pole; in the end the ump called it foul and robbed him of his first over-the-fence grand slam. Instead, he came back and struck out on the next pitch. ☹ In his final plate appearance, he hit a line shot that one-hopped the right-center fence that netted him two RBIs and got him a stand-up triple. In the end, pitching killed us as we lost 12-18. We had made a deal prior to the game that if he cleared the outfield fence (“hit a dinger”), I would take him out for dinner. Although he did not hit a “dinger” technically, we compromised and ran him through Taco Bell for dinner. They were slow but at least we saw the Howard brothers again (they and their father had stopped out to talk with us out behind the right field fence during the game, where we had the portable gazebo set up to shield us from the unyielding sun. We talked with them again while we waited for our food. The crowd and crew at that time were “sketchy,” according to Luke. I agreed… We came home and I don’t think we made I through a complete show before we were all asleep… Abby woke us up when she came home from work and we made a mass exodus for the back of the house. Here are pictures from Luke’s birthday party from last weekend.

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We endured a long, hot Humpday. Luke was late getting up for his final basketball workout. Mom had to come ring the doorbell to wake his butt up. I was on my feet all day again for the second day of our semi-annual Hazard Surveillance Rounds. The State inspectors returned for day 2 as well. Justin & I took them on an EOC tour and everything went amazingly well. It was, by far, the best inspection we’ve had with these folks – ever. Our boss was so excited that he excused us from work a little early! I am SO proud of our team out there at the facility. I ran Ann to her final physical therapy session. Justin accompanied us so we could walk early at the cemetery. We ended up not going due to his headphones pooped out on him. Instead, we went to Best Buy and got him a pair of the new Samsung ear buds. We came back to pick up Ann but she took forever and I ended up falling asleep for about a half hour in the car. We took Ann back to work and we went to lunch at Arni’s before walking a 5K out in the heat and humidity around the airport property. Ann & I left a smidge early from Columbus to get Luke and take him to his final regular-season baseball game. They hosted the Decatur County team that was stacked with talent. Our boys hung in there – despite having one of our best players injured. It was Nate, our catcher. He had had injured his knee in last night’s game, so Luke was called-in to replace him behind the plate on this steamy night. He did really good for not having caught in a year. He did have a couple past balls (or were they wild pitches? 😊), but otherwise no errors. He nearly threw two runners out, but the ball was dropped by the fielder on both occasions. He did have one assist on a drop-third strike and made 4 assisted putouts on strikeouts. He did not play any other positions. At the plate, he went 1-2 with a walk, strikeout and a line-drive single to center. He scored two runs. We were down nearly the whole game but came from behind to win 12-11 with a walk-off bases loaded walk in the bottom of the sixth inning with time expired. The boys end the regular season with a record of 8-3. I believe they will have at least one tourney game next week to wrap up the summer league and Luke can then focus solely on football. Meanwhile, Abby went to Trafalgar to spend the day with her BFF, Megan. They had a blast – going boating out on Lamb Lake where they went swimming and even did some fishing for catfish! They also went to Brown Co. State Park to go horseback riding that afternoon. Bu ended up staying the night with Meggie, up in Raglafart. Here are pictures from Luke’s football game at New Albany last week.

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Thursday was yet another hot, humid day in the low 90s. It felt like summer had finally arrived. I was the first day this year that I missed our swimming pool. Abby drove back from Trafalgar and worked at Wings & Rings. Luke enjoyed sleeping in and later went to football practice for several hours. He said the heat really sucked. Ann had several meetings at the hospital, so and I played chauffer for her throughout the day. Old Black Betty did great – have I mentioned how much I love air conditioning? I was on my feet all day at work again, completing day three of my EOC rounds. I got about 15K steps that day. After work, Justin had his kiddos Gabe & Gracie join us on our trek around the airport property. It was super-hot that evening but the little ones did great. We went further than we had all year, getting in well over a 5K. After our walk, I took Ann to CRH for another meeting and I went back in to work and finished up all my paperwork from my rounds and cooled down in the penthouse. Annie and I stopped at Walmart on our way home. It took FOREVER to get through the bypass as they moved the construction to the southbound lane and opened up the new northbound lanes – it is very nice, for sure…but man; it took us about fifteen minutes to get through all the lights – plus there was a train too. We swung by Dairy Queen afterward and filled up Black Betty at BP. Boy, gas sure jumped up since we last filled up a couple weeks ago. Luke played some new video game last night – something besides Fortnight? Abby went to bed shortly after she got home from work. Ann talked with her friends on the phone most of the night while I got caught up on editing pix for this week’s blog entry. Here are pictures from Ms. Apple’s retirement party last weekend.

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I was up an hour before the alarm with the darn dogs on Friday morning. Ann & I went into work on another hot, sunny day. It went super-fast as we left just after noon, when her office closed. We came home and picked-up Luke to run him to the bank. We helped him open a checking and savings account and now he thinks he’s a big shot! I have to be honest; it’s a little depressing to know that our baby has a debit card now…because that means he’s reached yet another milestone of growing up. Once we finished-up at the bank, we met Abby at ElRep for a late lunch. Afterward, Abby went to work at Buffalo Wings & Rings, Ann took a nap and Luke & I mowed the lawn. It was so stinking hot outside that it looked like we had showered when we were done! Next, Luke drove us in the pickup to Mom & Sandy’s house where he mowed the lawn while I went inside and visited with Mom O. Sandy stopped in for a moment to say hi. She has been really busy this week getting the new radio channel up and running – that will give them four stations now! We came home and got cleaned-up and cooled-down, taking it easy and watching an SVU marathon; I turned-in early, before Abby even came home from work… Here are pictures of the latest additions to my Hot Wheels collection.

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We enjoyed sleeping in on Saturday. It was yet another hot & humid day. I paid the bills and then woke-up Luke and surprised him with a trip to Columbus to go canoeing at Blue’s Canoes Livery. We had a great time – the weather was picture perfect, the Driftwood River was high and fast and it was ideal for Luke’s first experience. With the current moving quickly, we knocked out the 7-mile trek in under three hours! We stopped only twice to get out and stretch and relieve ourselves. We went swimming and ate during our first stop. The water was a bit chilly, but we got used to it quickly. The river was mostly as I remembered it. I did not take him down the little stretch that leads to the private sandbar, where Paul & I always stopped, but I wish I had. It looked like it was pretty low through there and we would’ve likely had to walk the canoe through it. As it was, we did not have to get out nor did we tip, which I was impressed with, since it was Luke’s first time in a canoe and my first time in well over a decade. I tried to bring the kids canoeing when Luke was about three or four years old, but we couldn’t go because we got there too late. For whatever reason, I haven’t been back since. I would estimate they had about 300-400 people there – the parking lot and the water was very busy. I’d never seen that many people out on the water, but it was still cool as we managed to find areas where we still felt like we were alone at times. But, before we knew it, we were done and walking back to the van – it ended rather abruptly. They’ve really cleaned-up the banks of the river – gone is the junkyard that used to mark the end of the route and they’ve redone the exit into the back of the office. It looks really nice now. I thought we had at least another mile to go and was astonished at how quickly we got done! We got changed and then stopped at Vic’s Antique and Uniques, which had a bizarre mix of things from a WWII-ear B2 bomber to weird European cars and a few old fire trucks, among and all kinds of other cool stuff – but alas, no Hot Wheels. Luke was a bit hangry, so we stopped at Taco Bell then drove home through the country. Little Lukey was a bit sun-burnt and tuckered out, sleeping most of the way home. Abby worked at BWR then Garrett came down and they drove up to Megan’s house to go boating out on the lake and stay the night. Ann enjoyed a quiet day with the dogs, sleeping and watching a Chopped marathon. That night, we took it easy, watching another SVU marathon and an old movie on the big screen while taking naps and trying to beat the heat. Here are random pictures from our recent adventures.

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We enjoyed sleeping in again on Sunday morning. We slowly got around to doing our weekly household chores and checking all the fluids in the automobiles. It was a lazy day of watching my favorite DVR’d shows while Ann napped – Star Trek, Ancient Aliens and NASCAR. Luke’s PC died in the early afternoon. After troubleshooting it for about twenty minutes, I found the hard drive had broken and is now clicking – a sure sign of end-of-life. We got twelve years out of it, so it’s time to move on. It started life as an XP computer and was then upgraded to Win7 and eventually Win10 a few years ago. I’ll start looking for a replacement for him next week but in the meantime, I got out my old backup laptop and got it all hooked up for him. I laughed when I saw it had last been updated in July of 2017! So, I set it to run all the updates and let him use it. Abby & Garrett returned from Megan’s house and went shopping for dinner supplies. Ann cooked mozzarella chicken pasta for us that was outstanding. After dinner, Garrett drove home, Luke had Addison over and Abby & I watched the US women’s soccer team beat France in the World Cup to advance to the semi-finals. Luke was excited to try and sell one of his airsoft guns on eBay. If interested, leave a comment below and I’ll have him get back with you. Ann & Abs went to bed as I stayed up to finish this week’s blog entry while watching Fear the Walking Dead and hitting the hay myself. We have lots of social media pictures to share this week.

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Next up is our Waybac section, which continues to feature our final photo album – #18. We lead off this week with an article about our friend Allen in July 2002; then we move on to pictures of Ann and her girls at their annual retreat in Panama City Beach in May 2004; next is Matt & I coaching Abby’s YMCA soccer team in the championship game in June 2004; then we move on to Chrystie’s house where we see Luke & Alex with Matt in June 2004; next we have the cover of one of our Disney ride pictures in June 2004; then we move over to the back porch of Mom & Sandy’s Main St home on the 4th of July, 2004; and we wrap up in Rossville at Mom & Dad B’s house for the annual Bryan Family Christmas in December 2004.

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And we wrap up this week’s episode with our video segment. We have one new home movie this week as well as a ton from around the internet.

And that does it for this week’s entry into the Scheu Family Blog. Thanks for keeping up with us this time out and we’ll catch up with you again next time. Until then, have a good one. We miss ya, Mom.
Later, Scheu

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